Unrealistic resolutions fail

At some point everyone has made a resolution. They promise to finally put the cigarette down and pick up the Bible, or to say no to fatty carbohydrates and yes to fruits and veggies.

New Year’s resolutions have the power to change lives, yet for most people they have proven time and time again to be little more than failed attempts at dropping bad habits.

According to universal research, the consensus suggests that it will be just a short time before the promises of 2009 are broken as well.

The top three Google web sites: bgnews.com, welchmedia.com, and expertclick.com had studies showcasing New Year’s resolution data and about 70 percent of Americans complete the first week of January with their resolutions still intact.

Many are trying to bypass the disappointment of failed resolutions entirely. DJ Worlds, 20, a junior pulmonary science student from Rockledge, Fla. did not make a single promise while toasting to the New Year. Worlds said he made past resolutions, but reverted back to old vices after the jubilant hype settled.

“I don’t set myself up- not exactly for failure, but for disappointment,” said Worlds. “I failed after the first couple days, [so, I guess] old habits do die hard.”

A 2006 USA Today poll confirmed those old habits like Worlds aren’t easy to toss. After one month, less than 65 percent of Americans continue with their resolutions.

Sophomore Whitley Smith, 19, a nursing student from Thomasville, Ga., decided that in 2009 she would not be a part of that percentage.

“I do not really see the point in making a new year’s resolution if I know that I will succumb to my old habits by the year’s end,” Smith said.

According to the same data, the percent dwindles down to less than 50 percent of Americans who keep their resolutions six months after the first of January.

“I was proud of myself for making it to March, but by the summer time I think my vision got cloudy when it came to eating healthier,” said Nicole Mouton, 19, a sophomore psychology student from Melbourne, Fla. “It just was not an easy thing to do.”

The USA Today poll also confirmed that by the end of the year, fewer than 10 percent of Americans will have kept their new year’s resolutions throughout the entire twelve months.

And Chris Stukes 22, a political science graduate student from Washington, D.C. is among that few.

“I think I have always kept my new year’s resolutions,” Stukes said. “I would not set them if I felt I could not complete them.”

So how did he and the other eight percent of Americans accomplish a twelve-month, old-habit free year?

According to eHow.com, a web site with the sole purpose of explaining to people how to do things, the trick is not aiming too high. If the goal is to quit smoking, aim for one cigarette a day instead of quitting completely. If the goal is read the Bible, start with a chapter a week. This will ensure that there isn’t too much pressure from trying to stop habits immediately.

After setting a realistic goal, and working hard, joining the eight percent of Americans who practice a wonderful new standard of living may be easy.